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Council pledges to find places for Fulham Boys School pupils

Hammersmith and Fulham Council is helping find last-minute places for 52 boys who were told this week their new school would not be opening.

Leader of the council, Stephen Cowan, is helping to find new places for the boys

The council has pledged to find places for over 50 Fulham Boys School pupils who were told this week their school is no longer opening.

Following Monday's announcement that the free school will not be opening in September, Hammersmith and Fulham Council has said it is doing everything possible to support parents of 52 boys from the borough who had been expecting to start at the new school. 32 other boys from outside the borough have also been affected.

Education secretary Michael Gove made the decision to halt the Church of England school's opening, blaming difficulties in securing a permanent site.

Fulham Boys School (FBS) was meant to open in a temporary space in Gibbs Green, West Kensington under a two-year lease arrangement with owners, CapCo.

After that, it was set to move to the Parsons Green site where Sulivan Primary School currently is.

Despite free school funding being completely under the Department for Education's remit - and nothing to do with local authorities - the council has stepped in to help find other local school places for the boys signed up for FBS.

A meeting was held between the council and parents last night to discuss admissions and options for other schools, some possibly in neighbouring boroughs.

Sue Macmillan, the Labour council's education boss, said: “We thoroughly disagree with this decision and will do all we can to work with the parents and boys affected.

“Free schools are free of local council responsibility but despite that I have written to the government to seek an urgent explanation for its change of heart, what efforts have been made to secure a permanent site and why they reached this decision so late in the day.”

“This administration believes that free schools have an important role to play in improving the quality of local places on offer to local families and it is devastating that the opening of Fulham Boys School has been halted less than nine weeks before it was meant to open.”

 

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